New Zealand holds on to deny Canada bronze in Commonwealth Games team triathlon

Andrea Hewitt of New Zealand, right, and Desirae Ridenour of Canada compete during the mixed team relay triathlon at the Southport Broadwater Parklands during the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, Australia, Saturday, April 7, 2018. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)

GOLD COAST, Australia - Canada missed out on a bronze medal in the mixed team triathlon relay Saturday at the Commonwealth Games, finishing seven seconds behind New Zealand.

Australia won gold in one hour 17 minutes and 36 seconds, crossing the line 52 seconds ahead of England. New Zealand was a further minute behind.

Joanna Brown of Carp, Ont., who earned bronze in the women's triathlon Thursday, was third out of the water and fifth at the first handoff. Canada remained fifth after the second leg by Tyler Mislawchuk of Oak Bluff, Man.

Desirae Ridenour of Cowichan, B.C., pulled Canada back to fourth but New Zealand's Tayler Reid, who started the final leg with a five-second lead, held off Matt Sharpe of Victoria for the bronze.

"It was very hard. I wish I could have held on until the end, but I just couldn't get there fast enough," said Sharpe, who also anchored the Canadian squad to a fourth-place finish at the 2014 Games.

The 25-year-old Brown, coming into the second transition in fourth spot, struggled to get her shoes on before heading out for the run in sixth place.

"I'm so proud of my teammates today. I felt like I let them down a little bit at the beginning there," she said. "I had nothing left when I started, but we gave it everything we had.

"We have a really strong team and I love competing with them. There are just a few little things that we need to fix."

Added the 18-year-old Ridenour: "It's pretty tough. We gave it our best and we just missed the podium."

Each member of the team completed a 250-metre swim, seven-kilometre bike ride and 1.5-kilometre run. The relay will make its Olympic debut as an official sport in the 2020 Tokyo Games.

The sprint format of the individual triathlon contested earlier in the week was a 750-metre swim, 20-kilometre bike ride and five-kilometre run.

Mislawchuk and Brown were part of the Canadian squad that finished fifth at last year's Mixed Team Relay World Championships in Hamburg, Germany.


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